Activist investor Icahn reduces Family Dollar holdings
Matthews, N.C. – Activist investor Carl Icahn, who had been pressuring Family Dollar to sell the company, has reduced his ownership stake in the company from 9.39% to 6.09%. In a regulatory filing, Icahn said that the capital he is removing from Family Dollar could produce better returns elsewhere, rather than waiting for the recently announced Dollar Tree-Family Dollar merger to close or another buyer to make an offer.
Icahn, 78, will net about $174 million in the stock sale. He has previously said that Dollar General would be the most logical buyer for Family Dollar, but so far Family Dollar has not publicly indicated it is considering an offer.
Couche Tard buys 55 Super Pantry stores in Illinois, Indiana
Laval, Canada – Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. will acquire 55 Super Pantry convenience stores and related assets from Tri Star Marketing Inc. Fifty-one of the stores are located in the state of Illinois ,and four stores located in the state of Indiana. These stores offer Phillips 66 and Mobil branded motor fuel.
As a result of the transaction, Couche-Tard plans on keeping the existing fuel brands and would buy the land and buildings for 54 locations and would assume or enter into a lease for the single remaining location. Couche-Tard will also acquire three Bulk Plant facilities located in the state of Illinois and state of Indiana.
Following the acquisition, all of the stores will be operated under the Circle K brand by Couche-Tard’s Midwest Division. Terms were not disclosed.
The transaction is anticipated to close before the end of Couche-Tard’s second quarter, which is scheduled for Oc.12, and is subject to the standard regulatory approvals and closing conditions. Available cash dollars will pay for the transaction.
According to Jon Stewart, president and CEO of Tri Star Marketing, Inc. a third-generation family business based in Champaign, Illinois, whose family has led the Super Pantry business for the last 67 years, commented: "I am personally excited about this transaction, the addition of Super Pantry to Couche-Tard’s network of convenience stores will complement its leadership position under the Circle K brand. It is a true win for both consumers and shareholders of both organizations.”
"Subsequent to this transaction, Couche-Tard’s network in the Circle K Midwest Division would include a total of 600 company operated-stores and 193 locations under wholesale or franchise agreement. These stores occupy strategic locations within their respective trade areas. This acquisition would be a great addition to Couche-Tard’s expansion and growth plans for the Midwest Division." commented Bruce Landini, VP operations, Midwest Division.
BitPay woos businesses with new pricing plan
BitPay, a payment service provider (PSP) specializing in e-commerce, B2B and enterprise solutions for the bitcoin digital currency, has unveiled a new pricing plan that offers basic payment processing free, forever.
The company is hoping to leverage the pricing plan to woo businesses into accepting bitcoin for goods and services.
“We have set a goal to enroll 1 million merchants by the end of 2016,” said Tony Gallippi, BitPay’s co-founder and executive chairman. “When we started BitPay in 2011, we saw an opportunity to finally give merchants around the world relief from interchange fees. By offering a basic plan that is free and unlimited, forever, we give merchants yet another reason to be excited about bitcoin.”
BitPay touts bitcoin’s advantages over credit cards, because the bitcoin network, according to the company, offers instant low-cost payments anywhere in the world by using a distributed network that is free from interchange. Accepting bitcoin also opens new international markets for businesses, including South America, Eastern Europe, Asia and Africa where accepting traditional credit cards is risky and expensive and banking services are less developed, the company said.
BitPay’s free processing allows merchants unlimited use of any plugin, API or app from BitPay’s library and grants them access to BitPay’s industry-leading email support. BitPay will continue to offer its business and enterprise plans for customers that need additional products and support services.
BitPay has integrated the world’s leading tools for e-commerce, billing and retail point-of-sale including WordPress, Shopify, VisualTouch, New West, Magento and SoftTouch, in an effort to make it easy for businesses to add bitcoin as a payment option.